“My initiation moment for gravitating towards filmmaking was seeing the combined programme “There’s a Bagful of Fleas at the Ceiling” in Praha Cinema at Wenceslas Square. There was a big Věra Chytilová photograph on the cinema building, and I would walk to school past it every day and send her messages of admiration in my mind. The show was made of Chytilová’s two films, Ceiling and A Bagful of Fleas. I saw that about four times and it opened up a new world for me. Something Different, again by Věra Chytilová, followed – and I was hooked. But I was about 13 at the time and my journey to film was to be a very long one… Since my enrolment at FAMU, I have never regretted my decision to focus on documentary film. Not for a second!”
Helena Třeštíková graduated from the FAMU in documentary film directing. She has been working in professional productions since 1974 and has made more than fifty documentaries.
Over time, she developed her time lapse method. Her first cycle focused on the everyday lives of several young married couples for six years from marriage. The result is a series of six television documentaries, Marital Etudes (1987) and two full-lengths, Out Of Love (1987) and Looking For Ways (1988).
In 1991 Třeštíková and filmmaker colleagues formed the Film & Sociology Foundation, which purports to offer a new view of the society in the wake of major political changes. Then she made a loose cycle of five time lapse documentaries about the lives of juvenile delinquents, Tell Me Something About Yourself.
In 1994 she and her husband Michael Třeštík formed the Man and Time Foundation, which focuses on time lapse projects and films that reflect on time, its passage and the changes it brings.
In 2001 she completed the first part of Women at the Turn of the Century, a loose series of time lapse films (portrayals of Dagmar Pecková, Bára Basiková, young addict Katka, and Romany intellectual Jarmila Balážová).
Recently, she has been increasingly focusing on the drug addiction issue: Women and Drugs, Drugs and Women; Trapped and Still Trapped.
She has been a teacher at KDT FAMU since 2002 and is in charge of the execution workshop.
She earned her Docent degree in 2008 with her lecture, Documentary Film and Time – The Time Lapse Method in Documentary Film.